As ministry goes, we are in need of more leaders and even sometimes interns to help us effectively do student ministry! Last summer was one of the busiest summers of my entire life. I was juggling moving into a new home, planning for camp, other trips and activities, helping with vacation Bible school, planning a much-needed vacation, and our baby girl was scheduled to be born. It was extremely hectic as you can imagine. Then came Mark Etheridge! What an answer to our prayers? Mark grew up in the student ministry here, and is at Liberty University studied for student ministry. We offered Mark an internship here with our student ministry, and what turned out to be a hectic summer turned into a fantastic one. I believe in interns, and I want to give you a few reasons why you should consider hiring interns if your ministry can afford and handle it. BTW: Some internships are not paid so keep that in mind when planning.
- Interns give you a chance to mentor someone personally- This was my favorite part of the intern program here. I was able to bring Mark alongside of me to do life with me all summer. He ate lunch with us, went places with us, got to know my family real well, and experienced ministry. It is honestly like a personal discipleship program all summer! I loved investing in Mark, and mentoring him for his future ministry.
- Interns are helpful to your ministry- This comes in handy majorly during the summer months, because it is super busy, but really interns are helpful anytime of the year! I was able to give Mark jobs, and he would go out and get them done, and he would do them really well. My baby was born a couple of days before our students left for camp so I was able to stay home with my wife while our students went to camp with our intern and other leaders. If he was not in place, I potentially could have had to leave and go down to Florida for camp.
- Students love interns- Now, Mark grew up here so some students already knew him, but typically interns are loved by the students. In many cases, the intern could be single, and so a night out with the guy students was regular for Mark and his internship. Our students love cutting up with him, and having a lot of fun.
- Interns need training- If they need training, why not give it to them? Honestly, I have learned more being in the ministry than I did in 4 years of Bible college. Mark will tell you that he learned as much about ministry in the summer with us than Bible college. It is hands on training. I gave Mark an overnight activity to completely plan himself, we tagged team teaching through the book of James. So, he got an opportunity all summer to teach and be a part of the programming that comes along with student ministry.
- Interns are a great way to utilize your own students who get called into ministry- Before Mark, we had an intern at our church, Austin McCann. Both of these guys have grew up in the ministry at our church. So, our internship program has been a chance to grow “our own” students while they are training for vocational ministry. I was able to be an intern at my home church before I began full-time ministry. It is a great opportunity to grow the ones who have grown up at your ministry!
Bottom line, interns can be a great asset to your ministry! I encourage you to use these young students who are studying for ministry in your student ministry. It could potentially take your ministry to another level.